'Democracy Being Murdered Openly': Vinesh Phogat Snubs Parliament Opening Amid Wrestlers Protest

Top wrestler Vinesh Phogat alleged that the Kisan leaders and Mahila samaj leaders joining the protest march to the new Parliament building from other states have been detained by the police. 

Vinesh Phogat

Wrestling champion Vinesh Phogat, who has been at the forefront of the massive wrestlers’ protest at Delhi’s Jantar Mantar, on Monday said democracy was “being murdered openly at Jantar Mantar” while the prime minister inaugurates the new Parliament building.

In a video message on Twitter, the Commonwealth and Asian Games gold medalist accused the Centre of a “false pretence” at a time when people are dying in the country and scores of women wrestlers are sitting in protest against sexual harassment for more than a month.

She alleged that the Kisan leaders and Mahila samaj leaders coming from across borders to join the march to the new Parliament building for "Mahila Mahapanchayat" have been detained by the police. 

“On one hand the Prime Minister has inaugurated the new building of democracy. On the other hand, the arrests of our people are on,” her tweet translated from Hindi read.

After a month-long protest at Jantar Mantar, about two kilometres from Parliament, protest wrestlers organised a "Mahila Mahapanchayat" near the new building and said they will go ahead with their plan at any cost. Police, however, said that no protester will be allowed to move towards the new Parliament building as permission has not been granted to hold the "Mahila Mahapanchayat". 

The agitating wrestlers, led by Olympic medalists Bajrang Punia, Sakshi Malik and Commonwealth and Asian Games winner Vinesh Phogat have demanded the arrest of Wrestling Federation of India president Brij Bhushan Singh who, they alleged, sexually harassed several women grapplers.

Security has been stepped up by enhancing police deployment, placing multiple barricades and sufficient police pickets and in addition, intensive patrolling is also being carried out across the national capital and its bordering areas to ensure that law and order is maintained.

Farmer leader Rakesh Tikait had announced that thousands of farmers from Uttar Pradesh will gather at Delhi's Ghazipur border on Sunday morning and enter the national capital to extend their support to the protesting wrestlers. Farmers were also to reach Delhi from other border points.